I am still plagued by a lack of understanding of the duality of standards in conservative political thinking. The book I'm reading, Moral Politics, although very insightful, isn't helping me out very much when it comes to this Machiavellian duality.
Machiavellian: 2. being or acting in accordance with the principles of government analyzed in Machiavelli's The Prince, in which political expediency is placed above morality and the use of craft and deceit to maintain the authority and carry out the policies of a ruler is describedhttp://www.infoplease.com/ipd/A0524702.html
The problem with the book Moral Politics is that it sticks to the appearance of "morality" in conservative politics rather than dealing with the reality of the situation, the reality that conservative politics today is just smoke and mirrors, Machiavellian illusion. But maybe the immoral nature of conservative politics isn't something that was readily discernible when Moral Politics was written? I'm asking, not saying. Except for those who have their heads buried deep in the sand of denial, the question of the true nature of present-day conservative political leaders is increasingly becoming a part of our perception of current events. The DeLay issue is a prime example, but so was the Guckert/Gannon thing and Spokane's gay-tending gay-bashing non gay-basher mayor. There were Republican leaders haranguing about the Terri Shiavo issue who had pulled the plug on members of their own family. There's even a question of the sexual preference of the leader of the Republican party. And really now, how many Republicans have relied on abortion when there was a real need? Are we to seriously believe that only liberals have abortions?
It dawned on me today that in light of our acceptance of the pedaphilic sexual predator disgrace within the Catholic Church as well as the cover-up of homosexuality within the Republican party, perhaps the real disgrace in the Clinton/Lewinski issue wasn't the possibility that there was illicit sex in the White House, but rather the fact that it involved a woman! Maybe if you're going to do it in the White House, you should have some higher motive than simply male dominance over women, like maybe for instance male dominance over upcoming male Republicans? Granted, I'm merely speculating, not stating any known facts...
But there is this duality that seems to pervade the ruling party in Washington. There is the reality of what is going on, but that reality is to be strictly kept beneath a wall of lies. It is the lies that maintain the appearance of conservative moral uprightness. It's like a ship that's heavier than the water it would displace and is being kept afloat because it is in motion through the water. The truth, if it were to ever surface, is that if momentum were to be lost, the ship would almost certainly sink.
It was the Reagan presidency that gave Republican politics its momentum. Reagan somehow convinced a bunch of us that conservative politics was moral. During and since Reagan, corrupt men have ridden the wake generated by this Reagan illusion. During Reagan there was Iran/Contra. There was Ollie North and the ever innocent George Bush. There was the CIA and their secret illegal activity in Central America. But since Reagan, there has been a parade of corporate-sponsored political swindlers marching to Washington under the banner of moral Republican conservatism. Real Republicans are cowering in the corner trying to figure out how to put an end to this trend, but there is so much momentum from the Reagan era, these real Republicans are powerless to stop it. They realize that if they did manage to stop it, the ship would surely sink from its own weight.
But the thing is, the ship deserves to sink. It doesn't deserve to float. The ship's cargo isn't real morality, it's only power. It's this power that creates an illusion of morality and that illusion doesn't deserve to survive in America. Truth is what deserves to survive. The illusion of conservative supremacy has us on course for a shipwreck.
What plagues me is why so many of us want to be passengers on that ship. Why are we better off to ride on illusion rather than to stand on the shore and observe truth?